follow us down the rabbit hole with Nike Football ‘My time is now’

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If you're reading this blog, you're probably one of the 12 million or so people so far to have watched our new Nike Football campaign: My Time is Now. But you may not have explored the hidden tunnels in the interactive version of the film that lead to additional content. These include CR7 WORKOUT- Train with Ronaldo and download his exclusive football workout (above).
KITWALL: Explore Nike product and kit in a giant locker room (below) from which you can click through to buy online.

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And FOOTBALL BRAIN (above): Test your football IQ and compare it with your mates'.

There are nine tunnels to find and explore. The interactive version of the film is here.

nike football – my time is now – the full story

 

There is a new breed of football player emerging. Younger, smarter, and scared of no-one. Driven by the hunger to succeed. Armed with new tools and product innovation. Ready to step out of the shadows if given the opportunity.

Our innovative new Nike 'My Time Is Now' campaign celebrates this next wave of footballers, whether it's the participants in The Chance, Nike's worldwide hunt for football talent (with previous winners featured in the spot), or elite athletes looking to make an impact on the world stage.

But more than simply reflecting the defining qualities of hunger and impatience, this new global campaign provokes and rewards these behaviours in the participating audience too.

To achieve this, the campaign flips the traditional AV model: rather than creating a film for TV and running it online, we created a film for the internet, a version of which runs on TV. Launched online first, with the TV edit following up in Saturday's Champions League Final, the film is driven by a variety of different types of content, interactions and experiences, as well as seamless extensions to the overall narrative flow of the campaign.

Produced in association with Stinkdigital, this interactive film tests and rewards the viewers’ desire to learn, their knowledge of the game, and their hunger to succeed, and those willing to dig deep – the defining qualities of a modern player.

Ed Elworthy, long-time client of W+K London and Global Director of Brand Communications for Nike Football said: “We really wanted to showcase the hunger and impatience of young players breaking into the game – inspirations that are shared not only by our audience but by the Nike brand itself.”

Interacting with the film not only proves challenging and rewarding, it also arms young footballers with information that will help them to go on to be better players, and to seize the chance to shine out on the pitch. And if you explore the tunnels, amongst other things, you can unlock a secret Sonic game…

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And even get yourself a footballer's haircut…

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Stuart Harkness, our Creative Director on Nike, said: “Nike has always stood for innovation. So we didn’t want to just make a football spot about the next wave of players trying to breakthrough, but instead reward those hungry enough to find what it takes to make it, online, via hidden content in the film itself.”

The film and interactive experience sit at the heart of Nike's 2012 programme to find and elevate unsigned players around the world. This ambition is crystallised in 'The Chance' – Nike's global hunt for the hungriest emerging amateur players around the world, which is run by our friends at AKQA.

As always, this was a collaboration from start to finish. Nike Football, ourselves, AKQA and Mindshare worked on the overaching idea for the campaign. The film and the interactive experience were conceived and created by W+K London and produced by Stink and Stinkdigital, and directed by Adam Berg. The list of all those involved goes on, and deserves (and will get) a post in its own right shortly.

Please have a watch of the film, and play with the interactive experience. There's a whole lot of stuff in there to discover…

Over the weekend, it was all rather popular. We'll post stats when we can – nearly 12 million views on YouTube at time of writing.

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Wieden + Kennedy’s greatest Honda hits

At the British Arrows Awards last week, Honda received a special 'advertiser of excellence' award for their TV work over the last few years in the UK. We're proud to be responsible for that work. Here's a compilation edit that we made for the awards ceremony, featuring some of those commercials .

cruel agency creative derides cute hedgehogs’ thespian efforts

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There's a nice piece over on AdWeek about our new Lactofree 'Hedgehogs' spot. Here's what it says:

The folks at Wieden + Kennedy love their spokescreatures.

Last year, for Cravendale milk, the London agency filmed a charming pack of scheming cats with a thirst for milk—and opposable thumbs. (ITV viewers voted it the best TV spot of 2011, and it was on Adweek's list of the year's 10 best ads, too.) Now, W+K is out with another sweet commercial starring hedgehogs to promote the virtues of Arla's Lactofree dairy products. The spiny beasts are told they can enjoy treats like latte, crumpets and pizza if they use Lactofree—because they're not intolerant to dairy, only to lactose, which is the the sugar in dairy.

A wonderful detail in both campaigns is the element of truth in the whimsy: Hedgehogs really are lactose intolerant, just as there really are polydactyl cats with a genetic mutation that gives them extra toes. "Hedgehogs are a gift from the advertising gods," says Hollie Newton, the W+K creative behind the Arla spot. "They are lactose intolerant, wonderful and very sweet." Still, she adds, "they are rubbish actors."

Of the five African Pygmy hedgehogs on set, half of them ran really fast, while the others would just curl up in a defensive ball. W+K built a little seat for the one with the Parisian latte, while the two with the pizza have their own tiny sofa. Newton, who's still not sure how the agency was able to attach the blue bow to the supermarket-shopping hedgehog, says she would never have wanted anything but the real creatures in the spot.

And the agency got a great souvenir: The miniature commercial set, with its six-inch milk aisle, is on display at the agency's gallery space.

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Here's the TV ad again:

It’s half time, America

The Superbowl is THE advertising event of the year in the U.S.A..
America is watching. And at half time in the match yesterday, America got a pep talk on behalf of Chrysler. The talk was delivered by Clint Eastwood.

Awesome work from Wieden + Kennedy Portland.

Here are some of the inital responses:

"Chrysler is king of the Superbowl spots", said CNN.

“2011’s best Super Bowl commercial was Eminem for Chrysler. It's only halftime, of course, but the greatest of 2012 so far has been Clint Eastwood for Dodge, Jeep and Chrysler in another all-American “Imported from Detroit” spot.” – PopWatch, Entertainment Weekly
 
“For the second year in a row, the car maker has won over audiences during Super Bowl XLVI with an emotional commercial. This time it featured a gritty Mr. Eastwood trying to rally Americans.” – Wall Street Journal
 
"Powerful and one of the best Super Bowl ads ever.” – Allen Adamson, managing director of Landor New York, as quoted by Wall Street Journal
 
“The message of unity apparently moved Chevrolet, which sent out a tweet thanking its competitor minutes after the ad aired: "Thank you for your trust in America. From the heart of Detroit to your homes, we feel the same way." – As reported by MLive.com
 
“Once again, Chrysler's Super Bowl ad won the hearts and minds of football fans, this time with a little help from Clint Eastwood and, of course, Detroit.” – CNNMoney.com
 
“Clint Eastwood brings the first goosebumps of the night. Can't beat that voice. Can't beat the message about bringing America back in the "second half."”– MSNBC.com
 
“Chrysler's post-halftime "Motor City is fighting back." Political ad? Clint Eastwood ad? Polar bear ad? Who cares! A great director and actor pulls off the most interesting — and compelling — ad of the entire Super Bowl.” – Newsday
 
“For the second consecutive year, Chrysler made viewers fall silent with a gritty, gut-level ad celebrating Detroit — and built around an icon not known for shilling for products.” – The Wrap
 
“Jokes about Eastwood running for president quickly became ubiquitous on Twitter.” – The Wrap
 
“The commercial talks about recovery, hope for the future and recognition of thehardships we currently face — in a way that no political candidate or sitting President has yet done. The combination of America, nostalgia and hope willalmost bring tears to your eyes…In a word, it was perfect.” – Jalopnik

 

why the great unknown is great: new campaign for Honda Civic

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Our new Honda commercial for the 2012 Civic has just been released. It's Ad of the Day in Adweek.

They say:

"Significant new Honda TV work from Wieden + Kennedy London is typically an anticipated event, and the brand's new "Spark" commercial does not disappoint. The spot, supporting the European launch of the ninth-generation 2012 Civic, is a metaphorical story about how the engineers behind the latest redesign approached the four-year effort.
The beautifully filmed spot—narrated by the longtime voice of Honda Europe, Garrison Keillor—tracks the journey of an idea from the darkness of inception to its dramatic full realization. Filmed in Iceland and Prague, the trip takes the spark across dramatic landscape to capture the trials and tribulations of creation. Toby Allen, the W+K copywriter on the commercial, says it wasn't just about using pyrotechnic magic. He and art director Jim Hilson wanted to give some plucky character to the spark as it navigates through a wind tunnel, around rugged mountains and is nearly drowned in the sea. "It's an abstract visualization of how to look at the birth of an idea, how it grew and overcame obstacles in development, and ultimately about the alchemy that happens when hundreds of ideas come together," says Allen. (You'll also notice references to old W+K ads for Honda, including the famous "Cog.")

The article continues:

While this spot, breaking on TV and online Tuesday, is about the new Civic, the intent is to have a larger halo effect on the brand. W+K creative director Chris Groom cites the role research and development play at Honda, given the company's breadth of manufacturing activities across categories like bikes, lawn mowers, robotics, generators and marine equipment. "Honda takes all that knowledge and they apply it to building a car. It's quite different from more linear car manufacturing—Honda give their engineers a lot of freedom. This is a company that believes half of its business lies in R&D."
Last fall, after the European debut of the 2012 Civic at the Frankfurt Motor Show, (for which we also devised the stand) W+K created three interactive elements to generate chatter before this TV launch, clickable from the brand's YouTube page: The first, last October, was "Follow Happy," an interactive game that allows the player to track the thought process of Honda engineers. W+K then created "The Experiment Game," an HTML5 game that uses physics principles to challenge players to create a chain reaction by placing a set of pop-up windows in sequence. (Not surprisingly, it has developed an enthusiastic following in the tech community.) The third interactive piece is "Off the Grid," which provides users with a 360-degree video environmental experience, inspired by Google Street View.

The campaign also includes press and outdoor:

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Wieden + Kennedy places twice in Creativity’s best agencies of 2011

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Creativity Magazine just published their 2011 Agency of the Year 'most creative shops' List. Wieden + Kennedy showed up twice in the top ten, with our London and Portland offices both getting a mention.

Of London they said, "Cats with thumbs, sexy butter and daring digital make for a creatively standout year."
Their verdict on Portland: "The agency follows a stellar creative year with. . . a stellar creative year."
Nice.

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Branson bought a planet. That’s #KobeSystem

The #KobeSystem is where the successful find more success. You don’t have to listen to us, though. Take their word for it.

The #KobeSystem is where the successful find more success. You don’t have to listen to us, though. Take their word for it.

New for Nike from Wieden + Kennedy Portland.

The #KobeSystem is where the successful find more success. You don't have to listen to us, though. Take their word for it.

make it count – more work

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We blogged earlier about our new 'Make it Count' campaign for Nike. This is the year to step up and Make it Count. To celebrate Nike has launched a campaign which sees top UK athletes make their pledges for the forthcoming year, whilst inspiring people to be part of the movement and make their own pledges under the hashtag #makeitcount. Here's some more stuff.

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Above are the print executions.

Here's how they're looking in situ:

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And here's how it looks in the windows at NikeTown:

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And inside Niketown:

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If you go into Niketown Oxford Street you can make your own pledge, have your photo taken and turned into a visual in the style of the ads above.
A series of more personal portraits of the athletes capturing them at their most intense moment of training will be featured in an exhibition housed in Nike’s exclusive 1948 space from 18th January. Here are examples of those portraits:

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Wieden + Kennedy scoops ITV’s 2011 Ad of the Year

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It's a big thumbs up from W+K's Freddie Powell and Helen Foulder at the news that our Cravendale 'Cats with Thumbs' spot was voted number one best TV ad of 2011 by viewers of ITV, the UK's biggest commercial TV channel. ITV's top 20 ads of the year were featured on TV a couple of nights ago in a show called Ad of the Year. It has to be admitted that Freddie and Helen, who were interviewed for the show as representatives of the Cravendale team, do look slightly sheepish about being made to appear on prime time TV wearing giant furry cat gauntlets. But for the rest of us that moment above is TELLY GOLD!

Here's the extract from the show featuring the top of the poppermost Cravendale spot.

Some people find the Cravendale ad a bit scary, but I have to say I personally don't find the prospect of world domination by polydactyl cats nearly as unnerving as the luminous teeth of the man below. I couldn't pay any attention to what he was saying in the clip because I was distracted by his fluorescent chompers.

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Also in the top twenty ads of the year were two more Wieden + Kennedy spots. At number 13, from W+K Portland, Old Spice's 'The man your man could smell like'. Apparently, according to the celebrity lady interviewed below, this causes 'an actual physical reaction when you watch it'. Mind-boggling.

And at number 11, from W+K Amsterdam, Heineken's 'The entrance'. Fantastic suggestion from the actress interviewed that a follow-up ad should be set in Coronation Street's Rover's Return pub.

Well done to all involved in making these ads and big congrats to our clients. And many thanks for your votes, ITV viewers.